How does the Catholic Church decide who becomes a saint?

The process of saint making takes a very long time, sometimes it takes centuries. First of all, the person in question must have lived a life totally devoted to God and the Christian ways of life. In other words the person must be an honest and pure servant of God and they must also have set an example for others to follow in life.

The first step to becoming a Saint is to be declared venerable. This process takes place when the person in question has proved that they have performed a miracle. Usually the candidate has passed away and performed the miracle through the belief and prayer of those still alive. Once the candidate has been declared venerable, the next step is to be declared beatified.

Beatification is a process that takes place when the cardinals of the church decide that the candidate has performed a true divine miracle. This is when the Pope proclaims that the servant of God is to be venerated as a blessed. When the candidate has been declared a blessed, it takes some time for the process of Sainthood to occur. The local Diocese performs a special prayer to the blessed and a mass in his or her honor are performed by the holy see. At this point the candidate has passed the hardest part of the process, and is just in waiting to become the next Saint.

The next step to becoming a Saint is called canonization. From this point on, the church must await the next miracles to occur, that God has worked a miracle through the intercession of the candidate. When the last required miracle has taken place and it has been declared real and accepted, the Pope sends out a bull of canonization stating that the candidate must be venerated as a Saint throuhgout the Universal Church. The Pope does the ceremony himself at St.Peterís Basilica, signifying that the Sainthood has full authority to take place with the papacy behind it. The Pope then sums up the Saintís life and explains what the Saint has done to be declared a Saint, how they performed heroic virtue by example and by message to the Church.

This is the process by which a candidate becomes a Saint.

 

Kateri's Life | Kateri's Trail | How Kateri will become a saint | Kahnawake |

Fonda & Auriesville, NY | Saint Francis Xavier Mission and Fort Saint Louis |

The Kateri Center

Kateri's Life | Kateri's Trail | How Kateri will become a saint | Kahnawake |

Fonda & Auriesville, NY | Saint Francis Xavier Mission and Fort Saint Louis |

The Kateri Center